HC Deb 07 March 2000 vol 345 cc560-1W
Mr. Gareth R. Thomas

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what action he has initiated since the publication of the Social Exclusion Unit Policy Action Team 3 report on Enterprise and Social Exclusion (A National Strategy for Neighbourhood Renewal) to improve access to finance for social enterprises; and if he will make a statement. [113452]

Mr. Timms

Since the publication of the PAT3 report, the Government have announced the creation of the Phoenix Fund, a £30 million programme to promote better access to business support and finance in deprived communities. This will include an enterprise development fund, help for community finance initiatives, and a network of 1000 volunteer business mentors. The Government have also announced that HM Treasury will have an observer role on the Social Investment Taskforce, established by the UK Social Investment Forum. This Task Force will look at the next steps in devising a strategic framework for social investment, including investment in social enterprises.

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